Getting Real About Postpartum Depression

If you have followed this blog over the years you will know two things about me:

1. I suffered from postpartum depression, anxiety and D-MER after my first child.

2. I am silly and don’t like to get too deep and serious, especially on my blog.

Those are two really random statements, right? You see, I’ve always been an optimist. I’ve always been happy and ready for some fun! So, to go back to that dark place and talk about it is really hard for me. And since it has been 4 years, it’s difficult to even think that it happened to me and that I really did suffer through it. It seems like such a blip on my life radar. And it really was…. so just know, if you are going through it right now, it DOES get better.

Postpartum depression is a very real thing and it is so often undiagnosed or brushed off. You are already exhausted because you have a newborn attached to you 24/7. A newborn who just wants to eat when you want to sleep and if you already have a child then you are even MORE sleep deprived because you can’t sleep when the baby sleeps. So, those depressive feelings often get brushed under the rug as “Oh I’m just tired. I will get through.”

 nikki holding daughter with post pardum

Look a little harder. Analyze your thoughts. Talk to your significant other —-> DO NOT HIDE IT! The biggest wake up call was when I had a total meltdown to my husband (I can’t even remember over what) and he said to me, “You just aren’t yourself. You are never happy anymore.” That was when I decided that this was not normal 3 months after having a baby and that I needed to go to the doctor. I was like a completely different person.

Going from a happy-go-lucky girl always out on the town to all the sudden becoming a mom with some REAL responsibilities probably didn’t help my situation. I was thrust into this motherhood thing and I was dealing with A LOT. Unwed, facing a lay off, weight gain, gestational diabetes, blood thinners, PPD —> shit! My body was in complete chaos both physically and mentally.

My doctor put me on an anti-depressant (Zoloft) that definitely helped A LOT. I will admit that it my PPD didn’t completely go away. The side effects from the Zoloft weren’t that great either — holy night sweats. And I don’t think I really was 100% myself until I weaned Molly around 9 months and all those crazy hormones finally calmed down. I was terrified of having the same issues after Burke was born, but thankfully, I was fine. Just a little hormonal and overwhelmed! Newborns are HARD work y’all!!

I don’t really know why I felt the need to blog about this 4 years after it happened, but I just felt like I needed to address it in full. It is a big part of my story and my journey and I have a passion for helping other moms through those dark times. I’m proof that you can come out stronger than before. If you are suffering, please know that the fog will clear and you WILL get back your old self, even if you feel like you never will. If you need someone to talk to, please reach out. You don’t have to suffer alone. <3

 PPD sufferer nikki hill johnson